About Dental Implants
The most lifelike and durable solution for missing teeth
Dental implants are the strongest, longest lasting and most lifelike replacement option for missing teeth. Dental implants look, feel and function just like regular teeth and can last a lifetime. Dr. Young always recommends dental implants as the first choice for patients who are able to receive them.
What is a Dental Implant?
A dental implant is an artificial replacement for a natural tooth root. A titanium post is inserted into the jawbone to act as a replacement root. A connecting piece known as an abutment is placed on top of the implant and functions as the attachment point for a dental crown, a bridge or a denture.
Building a strong foundation
The implant fuses (integrates) with your jaw bone and securely anchors the implant in the jaw. The integrated implant is as strong, or even stronger than a natural tooth root.
Dental implant benefits
Dental implants have many distinct advantages and benefits that make them the best replacement option for missing teeth.
- Dental implants allow you to talk, chew and exert pressure just like natural teeth.
- Dental implants don’t require the grinding down and weakening of adjacent teeth, as with dental bridges.
- Dental implants have the same biting and chewing power as natural teeth. This pressure is needed to maintain the bone volume around the implant and the adjacent teeth. Without this pressure, jaw bone tends to shrink and your face can get a “collapsed” look.
- With dental implants you can bite and chew the foods you need for proper nutrition and do not have to use a blender.
- Dental implants fill the gap left by the missing tooth and help prevent bacteria from accumulating on adjacent teeth, thus helping to prevent gum disease.
- Dental implants are the most long-lasting of all tooth replacement options, and if cared for properly they can last a lifetime.
Who are candidates for Dental Implants?
Due to major advances in technology, most people can now successfully receive dental implants. In the past, people with too much missing bone around their teeth could not receive implants as the implants would be inadequately supported. Dr. Young can regenerate the lost bone through advanced bone grafting procedures and provide the needed bone support for implants to be stably placed.
Even patients with health problems that formerly made implant placement too risky can now receive dental implants. Dr. Young can work directly with your physician as needed to ensure your treatment is a success.
Except for young persons whose jaw structures have not developed fully, there are no age limits on who can receive dental implants.
Minimally invasive Dental Implant procedure
Dr. Young uses state-of-the-art technology to make your dental implant placement minimally invasive, efficient and comfortable. He starts by obtaining a 3D CT scan of your jaw and skull at a special imaging lab. The scan creates a 360 degree 3D composite image of your jaw, teeth, supporting bone structure and related anatomy. The images can be viewed from any angle and magnified for close inspection.
He then has these images fed into special implant planning software and carefully plans the exact placement position, angle and depth of the implant. He will also plan any bone grafting needed.
Dental Implants compared to dental bridges
For decades, dental bridges have been used to replace missing teeth. When placing a dental bridge, the teeth adjacent to the missing tooth need to be ground down so the bridge can be attached to them. This weakens those adjacent teeth and can lead to decay, fracture and other complications over time. Additionally, the average life span of a dental bridge is only 7-10 years.
Dental implants do not require the compromising of adjacent teeth. Dental implants provide the biting and chewing pressure needed to preserve the supporting bone around the teeth, something which bridges cannot provide. Additionally, dental implants can last a lifetime if properly cared for.
The problems with dentures as replacement teeth
The jawbone supporting your teeth needs biting and chewing pressure on your tooth roots to maintain its volume and density. When your teeth are lost, this pressure is no longer provided, and your jawbone gradually dissolves away and sinks. When you have lost all your teeth, the entire ridge of your jaw loses height and thickness and causes the lower third of your face to have a collapsed look.
Dentures alone do not provide the biting and chewing pressure necessary to maintain the bone volume in your jaw. The type of pressure placed on the jaw by dentures actually accelerates bone loss and facial collapse, which is why denture wearers often look prematurely aged.
Disadvantages of dentures
Dentures have many other disadvantages that make them a less-than-ideal teeth replacement option:
- Dentures slip and have to be routinely refitted due to jawbone shrinkage.
- Dentures can make noise or click while you are talking or eating.
- Dentures often need to be secured in place with adhesives.
- Dentures cover the roof of your mouth and inhibit your sense of taste.
- Dentures provide only 10% of the biting and chewing power of natural teeth, making it difficult or impossible to chew many of the foods you need for good health and necessitating the use of a blender if you eat these foods at all.
Implant-supported dentures increase chewing power
When dental implants are used to support a denture, biting and chewing power increases dramatically and the denture functions much more like natural teeth. You will be able to eat many more foods than with a regular denture. Additionally, the biting and chewing pressure exerted on the jaw by the implants stimulates the underlying bone. This prevents bone loss, so that your face will not get a collapsed look.
Complimentary Dental Implant Consultation
You can find out more about how dental implants can help you by scheduling a Complimentary Consultation appointment at our office. Let Dr. Young educate you on the benefits of dental implants and how they can help you. Your appointment will include the following:
- Consultation with Dr. Young
- Learn more about dental implants and the different treatment options
- Get all your questions about dental implants answered
To make an appointment, call 210‑660‑1050 or click here to request an appointment online.